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Italy Courses

Architecture & Design– Dan Burkett

DSGN 474 (G) – Urban and Architectural Form of the Italian City

A visual and historical exploration of the urban and architectural forms of Florence, Italy. This course will explore the nature of exterior spaces, piazzas, streets, gardens as well as the architectural works that flank these urban elements. Investigating the socio-cultural and political influences of the urban and architectural forms, we will seek a deeper understanding of the contextual order of the city. Field trips will expand the discussion of the exterior spaces and architectural forms that make up the city fabric. This course will fulfill an arts general elective for non-majors. Non-majors are encouraged to apply. All classes will be conducted in Italy.

DSGN 471 (G) – Seeing, Drawing, Thinking the Italian City

The course will explore the cityscape, architecture and landscape of Florence and its environs. The course is targeted for architectural majors and non-majors and involves beginning drawing paired with journal assignments. The architecture of Florence – its’ monuments, cityscape, and the landscape (Boboli Gardens) of the environs with its villas, Palazzos (Rucellai and Palazzo Pitti), cathedrals (Duomo and Santa Croce), and others – will be the focus of the beginning drawing and writing course, which will document the architecture and landscape of the Florence experience. Non-majors are encouraged to apply. All classes will be conducted in Italy.

Informatics – Lacey Lormand

INFX 499/HUMN 300 – Technology and Society: An Italian Perspective

In the seventeenth century Galileo proved that the Earth was not the center of the Universe and that changed the way the world viewed mathematics and computing. While students explore Italy we will also explore the contributions of that nation and its citizens to technology and computing. We will be able to see firsthand the Leonardo da Vinci’s flying machine, and discuss Marconi’s radio waves that are the bedrock of Wi-Fi. We will talk about more modern discoveries such as Alessandro Volta’s invention of the battery cell and Federico Faggin’s first design of the microprocessor and how all of these contributions help to create our computers, tablets, phones and the how we use all of these devices to communicate.

INFX 499 – Management of Information Systems of Italy

Using the Tuscan region as a backdrop, students will learn about information systems and technologies and how these are used in business around Italy. How do restaurants handle sales, or how do hotels book rooms or provide Wi-Fi for guests? In what manner do storeowners use technology to make decisions about how many items to order and what price to set for sell? How does a museum create a website for the public or how is a database used for inventory of items for any of these businesses? We will answer all of these questions by creating websites, using decision support systems, creating databases, working on mobile apps, and much more.

Marketing & Hospitality – Gwen Fontenot

MKTG 425/HMGT 432/MKTG 270 – Tourism Promotion

See the sites in Florence and Italy while learning about tourism promotion. The classroom will be sites and attractions such as the Uffizi, Ponte Vecchio, the Duomo, the David in the Accademia Gallery, San Lorenzo market, wine festivals, antique markets, hotels, restaurants, and much more. Prereq: Must have completed MKTG 345 with a minimum grade of C and have a minimum 2.0 GPA. Restr: Business majors only. (Students are encouraged, but not limited, to enroll in two courses taught by the same instructor. This will allow students to maximize their learning experience and prevent students from having conflicting class schedules.)

MKTG 425/HMGT 416/MKTG 270 – International Wine and Champagne Marketing

Walk through the vineyards, examine the grapes on the vine, and examine the processes used to create the unique Italian wines by touring area wineries. Learn about wine making and distribution through discussions, wine tastings, visits to wine stores, galleries, and much more! Participate in an optional trip to Epernay, France to study champagne production and compare it to wine production. Prereq: Must have completed MKTG 345 with a minimum grade of C and have a minimum 2.0 GPA. Restr: Business majors only. (Students are encouraged, but not limited, to enroll in two courses taught by the same instructor. This will allow students to maximize their learning experience and prevent students from having conflicting class schedules.)

Music – Chan Kiat Lim

MUS 481/HONR 365 – Exploring Italian Operas & Opera Houses – Treasures of Italy

When one thinks about Italy, what comes to mind? Good wine, pasta, and, of course, opera. Come on a tour of Italian operas and historical opera houses and learn how to listen to and appreciate Italy’s greatest treasures in majestic settings. As you examine how the characters in an opera interact to convey drama, you will learn how musical elements such as style, harmony, rhythm, melodic construction, and form are intertwined to deliver a satisfying musical experience. Florence, the birth place of opera, offers numerous opportunities to explore these masterpieces but our tour of operas and opera houses will explore Italy’s greatest opera houses, including the largest open-air operatic stage Arena di Verona, the prestigious La Scala, and the lavishly gilded La Fenice. Finally, after a good meal of pasta and vino, you can say, “Let’s go to the opera!”

MUS 481/HONR 365/HUMN 300 – Exploring Renaissance Music, Arts & Architecture in Their Birthplace of Florence

Have you ever wondered what tunes Sandro Botticelli might have had on his iPod while he painted in his studio? Have you considered who would have been the equivalent of Lady Gaga while Michelangelo was painting the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel? Did you know Florence was the cradle of ART AND MUSIC during the Renaissance? It was bursting with musical life that included the development of musical genres and styles that have lasted to the present day. Join me on a tour of discovery of Renaissance art and music in the city of Florence. Walk the streets, study the architecture, see the sculpture and paintings, and hear live concerts of Renaissance music in a city whose heart beats to a rhythm 500 years back in time.

Nursing & Allied Health Professionals – Michelle Broussard

NURS 397/HUMN 300 – Nutrition, Health, and the Mediterranean Diet

What better way to study the Mediterranean diet than to go to Italy and to explore its history through experiencing local food markets, restaurants, and cultural and social implications as well as its benefits to health. This amazing experience will include tours to olive oil plants, Tuscan farms, art museums depicting food and culture of the Italian population, and special guest speakers on the history and health of the Mediterranean.

NURS 397/HUMN 300 – Human Sexuality and the Italian Culture

Come to Italy and explore human sexuality of the Italian culture through the eyes of great artist of the Italian Renaissance in museums and galleries, literature, music and sociocultural attitudes and health practices of the Italian people. This amazing journey will take you to the great museums, galleries, tours of health care facilities including birthing centers and clinics focusing on sexual health issues, guest speakers, informal interviews and discovery of health practices and beliefs of the Italian culture.

Visual Arts – Christopher Bennett

VIAR 321/HUMN 300/HONR 365 – Open Italy: Practical Italian for Everyday Contexts and Contemporary Italian Art and Film

Discover the very best of art and everyday life in Italy this summer as part of an immersive study abroad experience. Practice basic language skills and enjoy the fun of getting out into the city, including time in Florence, Rome, and beyond. See astonishing art from the Ancient to Renaissance periods and delve, especially, into Contemporary Italian culture by learning about some of the most acclaimed accomplishments of Italian artists and filmmakers created during the 1960s, 70s, 80s, 90s, and 2000s—from the art of Alighiero Boetti, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Marisa Merz, and Maurizio Cattelan to innovative, classic films by Federico Fellini, Bernardo Bertolucci, Roberto Benigni, and others. “Open Italy”—live some of the texture of the Italian language; live the city; live the art.

VIAR 309/HUMN 300/HONR 365– Art in Person: Masterpieces of the Uffizi Gallery and Modern and Contemporary Italy

Works of art don’t simply exist—rather, as viewers, we enact them. This summer, enjoy an immersive study abroad course that makes great museums of Italy, in Florence, Venice, Rome, and beyond, its classroom. View works of art in person and write about your experiences. Synthesize what you see—from the art of the Renaissance (Masaccio, Da Vinci, Michelangelo) to that of the Futurists and Contemporary Italian artists at work since 1950—in a creative final paper or visual art project that draws upon what you’ve seen first-hand. Don’t just settle for works of art in the pages of books and stored in rooms in far off lands: view some of the greatest examples of human creativity and art history closely; take them up; and make them yours, on location.


Mandated for ALL Participants
Humanities 300: Italian Language & Culture

This course provides an introduction to conversational Italian language and will expose students to various aspects of the Italian culture.  The language component is held three (3) hours per week.  The additional components are held at various times (day and evenings) throughout the six-week period. This course will include:

  1. Pre-Departure Orientation – Preparation for travel and life in Italy
  2. Italian Language – Conversational Italian taught by local language school
  3. Cooking Italian – Hands-on cooking experience preparing authentic Italian cuisine       
  4. Wine Tasting – Seminar on Italian wine and proper tasting techniques
  5. Culture – Guided tours and visits to cultural sites and activities

All course meetings (except the orientation) are led by certified and qualified Italian-based teachers or guides and are arranged by the American Institute of Foreign Studies (AIFS).  There is no need to list this course as an option because ALL participants will automatically be scheduled to take this course.